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Istanbul Noir (Turkey)

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Istanbul Noir presents stories from a city at once ancient and modern, Asian and European, postcard-perfect and simmering with rage.

$18.95 $14.21

Available as an e-book for:

What people are saying…

“The authors do an excellent job introducing readers to a city unknown to many American readers, exploring the many issues of religion and culture that face modern Istanbul. Landscape is essential to these stories, all of which convince the reader that they couldn’t possibly have been set anywhere other than Istanbul.”

“Istanbul straddles the divide of Europe and Asia, and its polyglot population of 12 million seethes with political, religious, and sexual tensions, as shown in the 16 stories in this strong entry in Akashic’s noir anthology series . . . a welcome complement to the mostly historical mysteries set in Istanbul.”
Publishers Weekly


Akashic Books continues its groundbreaking series of original noir anthologies, launched in 2004 with Brooklyn Noir. Each story is set in a distinct neighborhood or location within the city of the book.

Brand-new stories by: Müge İplikçi, Behçet Çelik, İsmail Güzelsoy, Lydia Lunch, Hikmet Hükümenoğlu, Riza Kiraç, Sadik Yemni, Bariş Müstecaplioğlu, Yasemin Aydinoğlu, Feryal Tilmaç, Mehmet Bilâl, İnan Çetin, Mustafa Ziyalan, Jessica Lutz, Tarkan Barlas, and Algan Sezgintüredi.

From the introduction by Mustafa Ziyalan & Amy Spangler:

As submissions for Istanbul Noir started to come in, it became increasingly clear to us that what was taking shape was not just some collection of dark stories set in old Stamboul, but a rich portrait of the city itself—or, at the very least, a particularly revealing series of snapshots. Mind you, it is a city shaped largely by the often vicious ebb and tide of the nation’s politics. Although Ankara may be the capital of the Republic of Turkey, the truth of the matter is, with a good twelve million people and thus a fifth of its population, Istanbul is the throbbing, often bleeding, heart of the country’s politics. And it shows . . .

Lying at the crossroads of East and West, Istanbul belongs to neither and to both, and it is precisely this elusive in-betweenness upon which the city thrives. No matter how much blood is spilled trying to conform to Western standards, they just don’t stick in this slippery city. Here, you don’t break the rules, you forge a loophole through them . . . A den of sin and a bastion of virtue, Istanbul is a fog-covered playground of power and resistance, denial and repression, and if you don’t know the tricks of the game, you’ll likely feel the urge to abandon your marbles and go.

Table of Contents


Part I: Lust and Vengeance
“The Tongue of the Flames” by İsmail Güzelsoy (Büyükada)
“Hitching in the Lodos” by Feryal Tilmaç (Bebek)
“The Stepson” by Mehmet Bilâl (Sirkeci)
“An Extra Body” by Bariş Müstecaplioğlu (Altunizade)

Part II: Pushing Limits, Crossing Lines
“The Smell of Fish” by Hikmet Hükümenoğlu (Rumelihisarı)
“All Quiet” by Jessica Lutz (Faith)
“Around Here, Somewhere” by Algan Sezgintüredi (Şaşkınbakkal)
“The Spriit of Philosophical Vitriol” by Lydia Lunch (Tepebaşı)

Part III: In the Dark Recesses
“One Among Us” by Yasemin Aydinoğlu (Sagmalcılar)
“Black Palace” by Mustafa Ziyalan (Aksaray)
“So Very Familiar” by Behçet Çelik (Fikirtepe)
“The Bloody Horn” by İnan Çetin (Fener)
“A Woman, Any Woman” by Tarkan Barlas (Yenikapı)

Part IV: Grief & Grievances
“Ordinary Facts” by Riza Kiraç (4th Levent)
“Burn and Go” by Sadik Yemni (Kurtuluş)
“The Hand” by Müge İplikçi (Moda)

Book Details

  • Paperback: 300 pages
  • Published: 11/1/08
  • IBSN: 9781933354620
  • e-IBSN: 9781617750069


MUSTAFA ZIYALAN was born in Zonguldak, on the Black Sea coast of Turkey. He worked as a general practitioner and coroner in a rural Anatolian village, and now lives and practices psychiatry in Brooklyn, NY. His poetry, short fiction, and essays have appeared in many literary periodicals, anthologies, and in book form. He is the author of the poetry book Kizil Kanca Siirleri, Yakilacak Kentlerden, a collection of travel writing and essays, and Su Kedileri, a collection of short fiction. He is the coeditor of Istanbul Noir.

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AMY SPANGLER, a native of small-town Ohio, first landed in Turkey as a high school exchange student in 1994–95. She continued to foster her ties with the country and her keen interest in its literature throughout her college years, promptly moving to Istanbul upon graduation in 1999. She still lives in the elusive and amorphous Istanbul, where she works as translator, agent, and editor. She is the translator of Asli Erdogan’s novel, The City in Crimson Cloak, co-owner of AnatoliaLit Literary and Copyright Agency (www.anatolialit.com), and coeditor of Istanbul Noir.

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